|Original air date|
Mike Dopud as Varro
|Universe Season 2|
A group of people are forced to evacuate to Destiny after an attack on Icarus Base by the Lucian Alliance, and are now trapped there. Dr. Nicholas Rush breaks the master code and discovers the Bridge. After the rest of the crew discovers the bridge, Rush asks Colonel Everett Young to embrace Destiny's mission. After a failed Alliance invasion, Homeworld Command believes an attack on Earth is being planned. Young is grief-stricken over the death of Sgt. Hunter Riley. Varro and Lt. Tamara Johansen become close. Dr. Dale Volker's Kidney's begin to fail and he needs a transplant from MSgt. Ronald Greer. Eli Wallace transfers Dr. Amanda Perry and Ginn into quarantine.
On an alien planet, MSgt. Ronald Greer, Lt. Matthew Scott, Dr. Lisa Park, and Lt. Vanessa James observe some "Space Deer" through a Kino. Park admires their beauty, while Greer's thoughts drift toward their potential as edible meat. Park is surprised he would want to, revealing that she's a vegetarian, which Greer has trouble believing. Scott and James echo Greer's desire for some meat, but Park objects, citing that the creatures may be intelligent. Scott is doubtful, having witnessed one eat its own vomit. Lt. Tamara Johansen calls for some help at the camp they've set up. Greer agrees not to shoot one if it can provide a good reason not to, but doesn't seem to think it will. He takes Scott with him for the hunt. James just laughs, while Park isn't happy about it.
Greer and Scott close in on a pair, but Greer hesitates despite having a clean shot. Scott offers to take the shot, but Greer declines. When he tries to aim again, they scatter. They decide to pursue, but a large roar erupts from the forest. Scott deploys his Kino to find the source, but a beast bursts from the brush, knocking the Kino aside. Within moments, it tackles Scott, sending him flying. Though Greer has time to shoot, he hesitates once again. The beast knocks Greer aside and darts past him.
On Destiny, Young reviews the footage with Greer, Scott, and Lt. Vanessa James. It went for the camp as soon as it got past Greer. Numerous people were injured, and they couldn't locate TJ and Cpl. Reynolds. Scott asks for permission to retrieve them, but Young denies it. Scott argues that they may still be alive, so Young explains that he intends to go personally while Scott remains on the ship as the senior officer.
Eli Wallace is busy going through the boxes in storage. The one he opens appears to have spare parts. Dr. Adam Brody comes in to get him, as Dr. Nicholas Rush wishes to explore some of the unexplored sections. Eli is annoyed that they aren't actually doing much exploring, just opening the rooms and moving on. Brody explains that Rush is just being cautious. Eli questions the idea of Rush being in charge, but Brody knows he won't say this to Rush's face. They meet Rush at a locked door, and sure enough Eli doesn't have the nerve to speak his mind. Brody changes the subject to the door, which Rush explains is one of the last in the section. Eli assumes it will just be more boxes, but it turns out to be a row of Stasis pods.
As Young's team gears up, James calls attention to the fact that TJ and Reynolds might be dead. Scott notes that they never found any bodies, but James counters that the beast could have dragged them away. There's also the fact that they don't respond to radio calls, though Scott claims that their radios could be lost or damaged, or they simply aren't conscious. James merely states that their hope should be tempered by the willingness to accept the mission may be a lost cause. Young agrees with her, then sends the team to the gate to wait for him. Left alone with Greer, he asks about Greer's failure to shoot the beast. Greer isn't sure, so Young warns him that he'll need to work out the problem quickly if it was more than a moment of indecision.
Brody finds additional rows of stasis pods in the adjoining halls. Rush assumes the pods were meant for lengthy intergalactic travel periods. Both Eli and Rush are fascinated by the discovery, but Rush unexpectedly decides to ignore it for the time being. He intends to check the ship's database for information on the pods first, given recent events.
On the planet, the team is having little luck tracking the creature. Young suggests they double back to pick up the trail, but Greer wants to press forward, assuming they'll find it again. Young has James and Cpl. Marsden search the area to get rid of them for a moment, then advises Greer not to let his guilt from failing to stop the beast the first time affect his judgement. He thinks that Greer may have needed more time to recuperate following the surgery, but Greer insists that he's fine. He tells Greer to get his head on straight, then calls James and Marsden back so they can continue searching.
In the Mess hall, Varro approaches Scott for an update on the situation. Scott admits that they've lost the trail. Varro offers to help track the beast. Scott believes that Young and his team can handle it, but Varro politely rebukes that idea, citing the lifelong experience of himself and the other Alliance members in hunting game. Scott seems hesitant, so Varro adds that, no matter what the outcome, Scott will want to know that he did everything in his power to rescue his lost people.
Chloe Armstrong has taken up the duty of treating the injured in TJ's absence. Park relates how the attack happened so fast that she didn't even see what hit her. Dr. Dale Volker comes in to visit. Dr. Morrison asks if he came to check on them. Volker clearly only came to see Park, but tries to humor Morrison. Morrison complains of a broken ankle, while Park has a cracked rib. Volker inquires about treating such an injury, but Chloe, speaking from experience, explains that it will heal itself in a month. Volker asks if there's anything he can do, so Morrison cuts in, asking Volker to remove his sock, since his foot is swelling. Chloe steps in to placate him so Volker can continue his visit uninterrupted. Park appreciates the visit.
Reynolds wakes TJ up in the beast's lair, which is inside a cave on a mountain. Reynolds explains that it dragged them there from the camp. Their weapons are gone, and TJ lost her radio. Reynolds has his, but it's damaged. TJ sets her sights on escaping, but Reynolds' leg is broken, preventing him from walking. Reynolds tries to be optimistic about their survival, since he believes the beast would have killed them if it wanted to. TJ surveys the cave and finds a pile of bones, realizing that the beast merely intends to eat them later.
Greer isn't happy about the Alliance team participating in the rescue, but Young is willing to put up with it if it means they have a better chance of rescuing TJ and Reynolds. Varro and the others show up, having taken a detour to examine the camp. Young thanks him for the assistance, but Varro merely claims that they need to work together. He confirms that TJ and Reynolds were taken alive, presumably to be eaten later, and urges haste in rescuing them.
Eli complains to Brody about Rush's approach to the stasis pods. Brody believes that Rush's caution stems from having his mind trapped in the ship's computer. Fed up with waiting, Eli decides to check out the stasis pods himself, asking Brody not to tell Rush. Brody decides to follow him instead of moving on.
In the cave, TJ decides to check out the outside of the cave, calming Reynolds when he starts to panic at her leaving. From the outside, she sees the beast guarding the entrance from the foot of the mountain. Reynolds suspects that TJ may leave him behind, but she assures him that they'll escape together. She pulls apart the radio to start repairing it.
Chloe finds Volker in the Control interface room, offering to get him something from the mess hall. He declines and asks about the search, but Chloe hasn't heard anything since Varro's team left. She steers the conversation toward Volker's feelings for Park, having picked up on it during their conversation in the infirmary. Volker tries, unconvincingly, to claim it's platonic. After an awkward silence, Volker reminds Chloe of her destination to break the tension.
As Eli and Brody examine one of the pods, Eli expresses his annoyance at Rush being their de facto leader. Brody points out that Rush was the lead scientist on the Icarus project, which Eli counters by noting that he ended up solving the problem needed to dial the ninth chevron. Brody sarcastically thanks him for the effort. Brody wonders if Eli wants to take over, but Eli explains that he merely wants the science team to have more freedom in their work. Concurrently, Rush is running a diagnostic on one of the pods from the bridge. The pod Eli and Brody are working on is highlighted. Brody, who is working on the pod from the inside, finds himself trapped when it suddenly activates. Eli is unable to shut it off before it puts Brody into stasis.
It is night on the planet. Varro asks about Young's hunting experience, and Young readily admits that the closest he's come is fishing. Varro relates how his father would take him and his brother hunting, teaching them to respect wildlife. He believes it was one of the most important lessons he learned. Greer has no such appreciation for the beast they're hunting, but Varro counters that it attacks to eat or out of fear, not out of malice. As they move forward, the tracks suddenly stop. Before they can figure out why, the beast attacks. It manages to take down nearly the entire team in the chaos. Greer is quick to regain his footing and chases it, but Varro stops him, aware that it is trying to divide them up so they'll be easier to kill.
Four members of the Alliance team are dead. James has a dislocated shoulder, which Greer helps put back into place. James confronts Greer about his hesitation in the Kino footage, knowing that while normal people may hesitate, Greer would not. He admits that, during his surgery, there was a moment where he thought he had died, waking up to an endless darkness. The thought of seeing it again has been consuming him. James assures him that it was just an effect of the drugs, confident that while she can't know for sure what death is like, it isn't what he described.
Varro stitches up a severe cut on Young's chest. He insists that Young return to Destiny, as in his current state his presence would do more harm than good, and promises to bring TJ back. Varro's remaining teammate says that they need to get moving, and that the bodies can be buried later. Young passes Varro a pistol, then reiterates his promise.
Rush calls Eli from the bridge, since he and Brody are supposed to be running diagnostics in the control interface room. He pulls up the diagram of the stasis pods on his monitor as they speak. Eli is still working on freeing Brody, but has had no luck, so he claims to be in the mess hall with Brody and assures him they'll be done soon. Rush just smiles.
Thea team on the planet now consists of Varro, his teammate Tasia, Greer, and Marsden, James having left with Young. It is daytime once more. Varro stops at a clearing, explaining to Greer that they intend to set an ambush for the beast before it can attack them again.
TJ has built a small fire in the cave. She checks her watch, telling Reynolds that Destiny will jump in six hours. Reynolds doesn't believe the crew would abandon them, but TJ knows they would if they thought they were dead. Hence, she needs to get the radio working.
Volker brings Park some food from the mess hall. She's asleep, and he hesitates to wake her. She wakes up a few moments later, asking if he was watching her sleep. He awkwardly explains that he wasn't, then offers her the food. Rush comes in to retrieve some equations Park was working on. Volker protests making her work while injured, but Park explains that she asked for it so she'd have something to do. Rush reminds Volker of his shift on the bridge. Volker wants to finish his visit, which Rush is happy to let him do.
Varro places mines in the clearing. Greer suspects that their efforts are going to waste, and the beast is escaping while they wait for it. Varro explains that the beast is trying to protect its lair, so it has to stay close to keep the team from finding it. Greer accepts that logic, but warns Varro that he might not make it back to the ship if he's wrong. Varro affirms his desire to rescue TJ and Reynolds, though Greer knows it's more personal than Varro is letting on. He doesn't believe Varro has a chance with TJ, but Varro brusquely states that any such decision would be TJ's. Tasia radios to warn him of the beast moving toward them. Greer goads it into attacking them, and it runs right into the mines. Tasia and Marsden emerge from the brush to confirm the kill. Tasia suggests they get moving before it gets dark again. Suddenly, Marsden and Tasia are dragged away; there are more beasts out there.
Varro and Greer continue to fololow the beasts' trail. These beasts are smaller, presumably the larger one's young. The trail is easy to follow, which Varro attributes to the beasts attempting to lead them into a trap. He knows that the presence of additional beasts does not bode well for the rescue of TJ and Reynolds. Greer tries to insinuate the Varro wants to give up, but Varro intends to see it through. Regardless, they are close enough to the nest that turning back would be impossible anyway.
Reynolds dreads the thought of being eaten alive, and wants TJ to kill him should that outcome be certain. TJ angrily talks some sense into him, telling him that his only options are to help her survive, or live with the shame of having her rescue him and herself. She manages to repair the radio, and starts signaling. Meanwhile, Varro compares Greer to another man he knew, one who also had no fear. He believes that such an attitude is a detriment, and that fear is necessary to protect oneself and others. They receive TJ's signal. She explains their situation and gives Greer their relative position.
Volker shows up on the bridge, having finished his visit with Park. Rush has noticed his relationship with her, too, which Volker again dismisses as platonic. Rush confirms this, which Volker takes as a belief that such a relationship could never happen. He extrapolates on this, noting that Volker is the type to be the trusted friend, rather than the romantic interest. He believes that such a situation benefits the pursuit of science, but Volker seems unsettled by his words.
Eli brings Chloe in to examine the pod. She protests, since she still has work in the infirmary. Upon seeing Brody, she assumes Eli did something to trap him, though Eli claims it was Brody's fault. Chloe wants to contact Rush, but Eli doesn't want to, at least not until he has no other choice. It is his hope that she may see something he's overlooked.
Varro and Greer reach the mountain where the beast has made its lair. Varro offers to scout out the area, but Greer denies that plan. Varro says nothing in response, so Greer encourages him to speak his mind. Varro doesn't believe Greer is up to the task, and that they don't have time for Greer to work out his issues. Greer insists on going, and gives Varro a brick of C-4 to create a diversion.
The second adult beast returns to its lair. It observes TJ and Reynolds, as well as the fire TJ has made. The C-4 detonates, causing the young beasts to pursue Varro. The adult beast isn't drawn away. Greer comes in, ready to shoot, but TJ stops him. The beast seems to recognize that they're intelligent from the fire, which is why it hasn't killed them. Greer has them move away, then lowers his gun to show he's not hostile. The beast sniffs him, then backs off, allowing him to leave.
On the bridge, Rush shuts off Brody's stasis pod, apparently satisfied with the data he's collected. He tells Brody that he ran a diagnostic on one of the pods, and that the results were informative. Chloe and Eli are surprised by the inexplicable deactivation of the pod.
Greer, TJ, and Reynolds meet up with Varro outside, who managed to escape the young beasts unharmed without killing any of them. As they head back to the gate, they come across one of the space deer.
On Destiny, TJ meets with Varro to congratulate him on being given free reign of the ship. Greer put in a good word for him with Young, though Varro is sure he'll deny it if questioned. She apologizes for the loss of his team, but assures him he has a place among the crew. He tries to kiss her, but a knock on the door interrupts him. Young enters, having come to get Varro to help prepare the meat from the space deer. As they leave, he checks with TJ to make sure she is alright.
On the bridge, Rush has completed a round of diagnostics and announces that they can move on to examining the stasis pods. Eli and Brody urge caution, though they don't admit why. Rush agrees with them, smiling as he walks out.
Volker heads for the infirmary with a small handful of flowers, only to find Greer intimately checking up on Park. He gives up on the attempt. Meanwhile, the meat from the space deer is served to the ecstatic crew.
Barbequed space deer; The Beast; C-4; Control interface room; Destiny Bridge; Destiny infirmary; Faster-Than-Light engine; Fishing; Flower; G36K; Icarus project; Kidney; Kino; Lucian Alliance; Lucian Alliance mine; Mess hall; Planet (The Hunt); Rib; Snowboarding; Space Deer; Stasis hall; Stasis pod
Park: No. You guys can't kill those creatures. This has nothing to do with being a vegetarian. We don't know anything about them. They could be intelligent.
Scott: We just saw one of them eat its own vomit. How smart can they be?
Greer: Ok, look, I'll tell you what. If they can give me one good reason why I shouldn't eat them, I won't. But it better be a good one, because I am mighty hungry.
Eli: (About Rush) I'm just saying, recent events have made me put things in perspective. Like, who made him de facto leader?
Brody: He did. He was lead scientist on Icarus.
Eli: Yet, I'm the one who solved the mystery of the ninth chevron.
Brody: Yeah. Thanks for that.
James: Why didn't you pull that trigger? There's no predicting how someone's going to react in a pressure situation. Panic sets in, people freeze, it happens. But not to you. Something got inside your head. What?
Greer: I think I died. After the kidney surgery, during the recovery there was a point where I woke up…to nothing. Couldn't hear, couldn't see, couldn't move. I was trapped in this darkness, you know, like nothing I have ever known.
James: You were scared. That's a normal reaction.
Greer: I've done some crazy things in my day; risked my life without even giving it a second thought. No fear. But now… All I know is that darkness and the fact that I don't ever want to go back.
James: TJ had you under some pretty heavy sedatives for that operation. They shut you down. Your brain was probably the first thing to wake up, and it just took the rest of your body a little while to catch up.
Greer: You think that's what it was?
James: I can't claim to know for sure what death is, but I know in my heart it isn't that.
Volker: Sorry. Lost track of time.
Rush: Yeah, well I'm not surprised. You two obviously enjoy each other's company.
Volker: I'm not sure if you've meant anything by that, but you should know, there's nothing going on between me and Park.
Rush: (smirking) Of course not.
Volker: What do you mean, "Of course not"? You, you say it like it could never happen.
Rush: Well, it couldn't.
Volker: Okay, I get it. Because she's so…attractive and I'm, and I'm not?
Rush: No. No, no, no, no. Let's, let's just say that you don't seem like the romantic type.
Volker: Oh, really? Okay, well then, ah, what type am I?
Rush: The good friend type, obviously. The trusted confidante. The guy who's always there with the, ah, the shoulder to cry on. And that's just life, I'm afraid. we all have our predestined roles. But you know, on the bright side, a life free of romantic entanglement, well, it certainly benefits the pursuit of science.
- This episode marks the deaths of Cpl. Marsden, Koz and Tasia, the twenty-fourth loss of the Destiny expedition, after Senator Alan Armstrong, Sgt. Curtis, Andrea Palmer, Cpl. Gorman, Sgt. Spencer, Dr. Jeremy Franklin, Cpl. Rivers, Airman Armando Elsinor Von Spelker the Third, Sgt. Hunter Riley, Ginn, Simeon, Michaels, Henderson, Dr. Robert Caine, Peter, Val, Dana, Rachel, Vince Kwan, Dr. Norris and Colonel David Telford.
- Varro becomes the last surviving Lucian Alliance member on the Destiny and is absorbed into the general crew, effectively ending the divided crew storyline.
- A flashback scene involving Lt. Tamara Johansen's father and sister was filmed but had to be cut for time.
- Ming-Na (Camile Wray) does not appear in this episode.
- Kyra Zagorsky (Tasia) previously played Ara in the Stargate: Atlantis episode "Reunion".
- This is the 350th episode of the Stargate franchise.
- According to Vanessa James, It has been ten months since the events of "Air, Part 1".
- As before in "Malice", the G36K sight is simplified to a relatively primitive cross hair. Moreover, when MSgt. Ronald Greer takes aim, he looks through the top sight which in reality is a red dot, or reflex, sight. The optical sight is at the bottom.